And otherwise-- old friends are the best friends.
The ikkou pale when one's attention is more fixed on Gaiden events, but read seven tanks' worth of them in four days and they regain their true and deeper colours. Especially Hakkai, my first and fairest; especially Hakkai and Gojou, in that night conversation in vol 5, and the bridge conversation in 6. How nice to have someone who understands you so well, and expresses that understanding so delicately, as Gojou does with Hakkai. This is why it's unnecessary to do yaoi with them; the emotional nuances of the relationship are hotter than anything they could do physically. Well, unless it's physical as in youkai Hakkai's fight scene, with Gojou pinning his arms from behind and bringing him at once to his senses.
The personal growth in the worm arc is most obviously seen in Gokuu, but Hakkai runs him a close second. Even Sanzou seems to have some development, which is good because my problem with Sanzou has always been that his stance as nay-saying protagonist allows for no change; and there hasn't been much real alteration in him since, ohh, vol 4ish of the first series. The one person who doesn't seem to change here is Gojou; and that may be that Gojou doesn't need to change. He seems to have gone through his epiphany back with kamisama and resolved whatever conflicts he had then. Though if Gokuu is growing up, maybe Gojou will eventually quit the tiresome brotherly bickering with him in the back seat, which would be nice.
(I'm sure someone did a stylistic analysis of the art of the bridge scene, and I thought it was telophase, but I can't find it in her journal. Maybe it was in the saiyuki community...)